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Township adopts residents' wind turbine zoning proposal  

In a 4-1 vote Wednesday, the Union Township zoning board abandoned its initial proposal for wind turbine regulations.

Instead, they adopted zoning guidelines suggested by 10 township residents, as opposed to submitting a zoning proposal modeled after one in Logan County to the regional planning commission.

The board has worked since January to draft preliminary regulations for the placement and construction of wind turbines. The document states that a turbine can be placed 1,000 feet from a residence and 500 feet from a roadway.

The new proposal suggests a wind turbine should set 2,100 to 2,600 feet from any property line and not exceed 300 feet in height from its base to the tip of the blade.

Urbana attorney and Union Township resident Kevin Talebi called the board’s zoning proposal a “cookie cutter” ordinance. “It’s a piece of legislation (the company) wants you to apply blanketly,” he said. “It does not adequately protect the interest of the residents.”

New York-based wind energy developer Everpower has proposed constructing 500-foot turbines in the eastern part of Champaign County – Union, Wayne and Salem townships – and has been talking with landowners who could earn up to $6,000 annually for allowing one on their property.

“I hope that we can convey how a program like this will fit in the community for everyone,” Everpower representative Michael Speerschneider said.

The Logan-Union-Champaign Regional Planning Commission will review the zoning regulations as required by state law, and the board will hold a public hearing at 7 p.m. May 23 in the Union Township Building, 3081 Harper Road, Mutual.

By LaToya Thompson

Staff Writer

springfieldnewssun.com

19 April 2007

This article is the work of the source indicated. Any opinions expressed in it are not necessarily those of National Wind Watch.

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